The Fluoride Conundrum: Is Fluoride Safe For Kids? | Family Dentist
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Is Fluoride Bad for Toddlers ?

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There has always been a conundrum on Fluoride toothpastes when it comes to use by small children and toddler. Even through every dentist advises you to always make sure that you clean your child’s teeth regularly but very few will take time to elaborate the entire cleaning process and what you need to achieve healthy clean teeth! When cleaning your toddler’s teeth, you only need a toothbrush with very soft bristles and small head and warm water to clean the teeth.

For a very long time, the ADA advised against using Fluoride toothpastes until the toddlers were at-least 2 years old. This was however recently changed and dentists started advising parents to use only a smear of fluoride toothpaste to clean their toddler’s teeth as soon as they show up. This leads to the conundrum of whether fluoride is bad for toddlers. Is Fluoride bad for toddlers? Why should you be cautious when using Fluoride on your toddlers? Here are some aspects of Fluoride toothpastes that you should be wary. Read on and by the end of the article you will have a better understanding of why fluoride toothpastes should not be your child’s favourite ‘candy’ when growing up;

Fluoride

About 90% of all toothpastes used in America today, contain Fluoride as their main additive. Fluoride is good for teeth in that it helps reduce cases of tooth decay but it is equally dangerous because it has been found to cause dental fluorosis and has even worse effects when ingested. For this reason, you should make sure that your child doesn’t come into contact with fluoridated toothpaste until he/she is at-least three years old when the teeth are strong enough and the child is wise enough not to swallow the toothpaste when brushing.

The foam

Another additive that is common in almost all toothpastes is Sodium Lauryl Sulphate which gives the paste the creamy thick texture. This sulphate has no importance to the teeth and has been found to be reactive when swallowed. If you child swallows toothpaste or the foam when brushing, then he/she will be complaining of stomach upsets. This can be inconveniencing.

Having said that, it is important to note that toothpaste is not all bad for the toddlers and its positive impacts outweigh the few negatives. You therefore need to shop for a toothpaste for your kid once he/she is past three years old. When choosing the right toothpaste for your kid, there are a few things you have to put into consideration. Here are some of the most important things that you have to think about when purchasing your kid’s toothpaste;

ADA seal

Make sure that the toothpaste has the American Dental Association seal which signifies that the toothpaste has been approved as safe and effective for dental use. The ADA objectively tests all the products in the market before declaring them safe for dental use. If a toothpaste does not have the ADA seal, then it means that it has not satisfied all the requirements as stated by the ADA and should not be trusted at all.

Flavor

This is very important especially if you want your children to fall in love with brushing teeth. The sweeter the flavor the more excited a child gets about brushing teeth. There are very many variants when it comes to flavor in toothpastes. Minty toothpastes are a no go zone for children because they interpret the flavour as bitter while flavors such as strawberry get them excited. You only need to be careful when the child is brushing because some children end up swallowing the toothpastes because of the sweet flavors

Abrasives

All toothpastes have abrasives added as an ingredient to help scour the surface of teeth and render them clean. The amount of abrasives added in the toothpastes vary depending on the age the toothpaste is meant for. Toothpastes for adults have more abrasive levels than those meant for kids. When purchasing toothpaste for your child, make sure that the abrasive levels are not too high. Abrasives can erode and wear away the enamel of your child’s teeth and this can be detrimental.

The bottom line therefore is that fluoride toothpastes are not bad for toddlers but should not be excessively used. Fluoride has its own positive and negative impacts but the positives seem to outweigh the negatives. Use just a smear of fluoride toothpaste and you child will grow with healthy clean teeth.

If you are still in a conundrum and need more information on the subject, then feel free to contact us at Vita Katy Dental Care. Here at Vita we have Professional & Experienced Dentist who understand the dynamics of Fluoride and will give you a little background information on Fluoride and will then advise you on the best thing to do concerning Fluoride and your toddler. Visit our offices or call us today to get more information on Fluoride toothpastes and know what is best for your loved ones.